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University Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Arab American Literature: Poetry

This LibGuide highlights the works of Arab American authors.


This section highlights Arab American poets and works of poetry that the University Library has access to.












Authors & Works

Hala Alyan

A Palestinian American poet and clinical psychologist born in Carbondale, Illinois, and grew up in Kuwait, Oklahoma, Texas, Maine, and Lebanon. She earned a BA from the American University of Beirut and an MA from Columbia University. 

Poetry Works: 


Four Cities


The Twenty-Ninth Year

Suheir Hammad

Suheir Hammad was born in Amman, Jordan, to refugee Palestinian parents. She immigrated with her family to Brooklyn, New York, when she was just five years old. Inspired by poet-performers such as Nikki Giovanni, Hammad has traveled the world reciting her poetry in various venues and universities. 

Poetry Works: 

Born Palestinian, Born Black

Drops of This Story


Breaking Poems

Lena Khalef Tuffaha

Lena Khalaf Tuffaha has lived the experiences of first-generation American, immigrant, and expatriate. She is a poet, essayist, and translator. 

Poetry Works: 

Water & Salt

Arab in Newsland

Letter from the Interior

Noor Al-Samarrai

A writer and performer whose work centers around the confluence between space and memory.

Poetry Works: 

"Dream after the Month of Tears"

El Cerrito

Kahlil Gibran 

Kahlil Gibran was born in 1883 in the village of Bisharri in what is now northern Lebanon but was then Ottoman Syria. He and his family immigrated to the United States in 1895; they were part of the large wave of immigration that took place in the three decades before World War I. Kahlil Gibran was the key figure in a Romantic movement that transformed Arabic literature in the first half of the twentieth century.

Poetry Works: 

The Prophet

The Garden of the Prophet

The Storm: Stories and Prose Poems

Mirrors of the Soul

The Forerunner: His Parables and Poems

More Poetry